Tag: Casey Affleck

Manchester by the Sea

January 13th, 2017 — 7:53am


Manchester by the Sea-rmScreen Shot 2017-01-12 at 9.42.35 PM

As mental health professionals, we have seen our share of tragedies and human misery, but usually perhaps because the patients are at the point of seeing us, there is usually a ray of hope for reaching to the future for a better life. There was very little optimism in this very well-done portrait of a man who is deeply and continually in psychological pain.

Kenneth Lonergan, playwright, now turned director in his previous writings (You Can Count On Me and Margaret) has mastered the writing of tragedies that may befall anyone of us.

In this film, Casey Affleck plays Lee Chandler who lives a life overwhelmed with guilt for what happened to his family. He then is faced with the responsibility of caring for his teenage nephew (Lucas Hedges) whose father recently died and whose mother has not been sober or on the scene for many years. The details of the story unfold with a series of well-done flashbacks which not only framed the story but also introduced bleak but atmospheric life in a New England fishing village. The classical musical score in the background defined the sad somber mood of the story. There were some somewhat lighter moments as we glimpsed at interactions of the teenage boy and his multi-girlfriends.

Casey Affleck deserves the accolades that he is getting for his performance in this movie. His facial expressions, voice and mannerism convey what his character has gone through and also the empathy that he has for his nephew. Michelle Williams as his ex-wife has a relatively small role but she is superb in her one important scene.

Perhaps we have conveyed that there is little positive hope in this film and it will be a depressing experience (which it will be) but we could not help noting there was a symbol of hope in a tangible object that is important in this village . That would be the family’s small fishing boat. We gleam a shred of optimism as we see how this small boat is resurrected as we hope will be the characters in this film. (2016)

1 comment » | 5 Stars, Drama

The Last Kiss

September 6th, 2010 — 3:07am

* * *
The Last Kiss
– nf – This is a movie that tries to examine the nature of love as well as marital and impending marital relationships in young people close to turning 30. The main focus is a couple confronting parenthood and the need to get married. Michael (played by Zach Braff who is a perfect younger Ray Romano look alike) realizes he is frightened about his future prospects with Jenna his lovely girlfriend (Jacinda Barrett)of three years who is now pregnant. He allows himself to get drawn into a brief affair with younger very tempting college student. His close buddies are dealing with their own variations of the relationship theme. One can’t get over a breakup, another married guy with small child ( played by Casey Affleck) walks out on his wife and still another can’t figure out what to do even though he is successful in seducing women. At the same time Jenna’s parents (played very well by Blythe Danner and Tom Wilkinson) are examining their 30 year marriage. All the main characters ultimately confront their vulnerabilities, are insightful and try to be honest with their partners and themselves. That is the strength and the somewhat refreshing component of the film. However, the movie is a cliché. The storyline is shallow and old hat. The comedy component is average TV sitcom material. We liked the characters but weren’t moved by them. It probably isn’t worth your time unless perhaps you are under 30. 2006

Comment » | 3 Stars, Comedy, Drama, Romance

Back to top